Researching Royals for the Shadeworld Series

 

Sometimes when writing about dragons and magic and awesomeness like that, you have to research real life facts and stuff. It’s a strange world novelists live in.

 

Researching Royalty

For those of you reading the Shadeworld series (P.S. The Dragon Bites, The Dragon Fights, The Dragon Sleights) you’ll know that royalty plays a major part in the plot line. There’s revolution and amnesia and an Earth High School and a bunch of teenagers, but at the center of it all there’s Prince Aeron, Prince Richard, and King Vovin, the royals who rule over the entire Shadeworld, and every creature from harpy to fey to vampire that lives there. But, on account of how I’m an American, I’m not super up to date on royalty and all of that sort of thing.

So while in earlier books I researched fighting and battle tactics, for P.S. The Dragon Sleights I set myself to research up on royalty. And because of a certain famous royal wedding, I decided to do a bit of research on how royalty works in Britain.

So I want to take you along on a bit of the research rabbit hole now and share some of the things I used to learn about the royals.

a rhinestone crown with fleur de lis with pearl details on white bright backgroud

Research is a Great Excuse to Watch T.V.

It’s true, research is a great excuse to watch t.v. What I like to do since I work at home now is to turn my lunch break into a nice time to enjoy my food while watching an episode of something fun on Netflix. Here’s what I’ve been enjoying:

Grace of Monaco

This film is no longer available on streaming Netflix in the USA and you’d have to either do the dvd rental service or check it out on Prime now if you want to watch it. The story was an interesting telling of a true series of events where a Hollywood starlet became a princess and was really quite miserable in it. Interesting events, and of course as an American I love any sort of underdog story. The ending of it cut things off a little abruptly, but I guess it makes sense you can’t boil someone’s entire life into a single movie, so I wasn’t too upset by that.

The Crown

I’ve quite enjoyed this series. I knew very little about the queen’s reign (we learned other things in History classes in my American schools, like The Trail of Tears, the Civilization of Mali, Ancient China, World War II, those sorts of things that had a bit more impact on my hemisphere, though I’m sure the queen is perfectly lovely)  so every episode has been a surprise to me.

I’m sure it’s not completely accurate, it would be almost impossible to capture the nuances of family life and personal relationships just from years of media coverage those outside of the royal family would have access to, but even keeping in mind to take events with a grain of salt I’ve enjoyed the series purely for its entertainment value.

I can’t help but think though that the casting director made some very odd choices for the characters outside of the main cast. The actress for Jackie Kennedy, in particular, was a very unique choice in both voice and appearance in my mind. But the main characters are very well done, so I probably should be more appreciative to just have that!

Prince Philip: The Plot to Make a King

I enjoyed this a great deal. It felt rather documentary-ish, so I’m hoping it’s somewhat historically accurate. Even if it isn’t though I enjoyed it, and that’s what matters.

Final Thoughts on Televised Research

I’m sure none of what I’ve been watching is high quality educational content. But it was fun to watch, and it got me the gist of the ideas, so I figure it works well enough. Learning doesn’t have to be stuffy, I thoroughly believe that is true, so I had fun with my inspiration.

And besides, I’m writing Fantasy, not a research paper. If some of the facts are skewed, it really doesn’t matter at all.

Or, it may be that my “research” is just a poor excuse I’ve made to myself to goof off on occasion. And why not? If you work longer hours, I think it’s perfectly acceptable to have a slightly longer lunch.

What do you do for work that’s really just for fun?

 

 

 

 

 

Vampires and Faeries and Mermaids, Oh My! Researching Politics to Write my Magical World.

Hi all. I’m the author that writes this blog. And the books you see on the main page. Actually I write  a lot of things to be honest.

But one thing that has made me waaay late on my deadline to finish writing PS The Dragon Fights, the second installment in the epic Shadeworld series, is that I challenged myself by writing something new I have little experience with. What does that mean?

Writing a Council Scene, or Why the Heck Did I Sign Myself Up For This Torture

Spoiler of First Book, also discussion of my next book (PS The Dragon Fights) ahead

If you’ve read PS The Dragon Bites (available on Amazon US here, or Amazon India or Amazon Australia or any other Amazon)  you’ll know that the wizards are leading the rebellion threatening to not only overthrow the Dragons that rule all of the Shadeworld, but to destroy their world itself.

In the next book the other leaders of the world come together to try to address this problem. It gets messy, of course, because even in a world full of magic politics is not going to be smooth sailing.

-End of Spoiler-

To write a battle council of magical creatures surprisingly involves some research into real world politics.

pexels-photo-531970

Researching Politics

I’ve never really been a politician and never even ran to be the president of fourth grade, let alone run for any office more serious than that, so I don’t have a lot of personal experience to draw on. It was a little dry watching hours of Parlimentary and Congressional meetings on Youtube, but I got through it, and I came out the other end absolutely sure that I maybe hopefully understand how a political meeting of any sort would likely go down. Hopefully the scene reflects some of the flavor and verisimilitude I think I’ve gained through my efforts.

I hope you’ll read the book once it’s released live and tell me how well I did!